TENS or Transcutaneous Electrical Neural Stimulation is more appropriately called Ultra-Low Frequency (ULF) electrical muscle stimulation in Neuromuscular Dentistry.
Neuromuscular Dentistry (neuro=nerves and muscular=muscles) is a science of dentistry that evaluates the complex relationship between teeth, temporomandibular joints (TMJ), muscles and nerves to find out the best resting position of the jaw (occlusion). This occlusion may or may not be ideal. In cases of misaligned occlusion, the stressed muscles of TMJ need to be relaxed so as to find their true resting state and establish the occlusion at that position. This is done by TENS as it is very difficult to voluntarily relax these muscles. In addition to this, TENS is secondarily used to achieve drug-free pain relief in TMD.
So TENS has two main uses in NMD:
Relaxation of the muscles of mastication that control the position of the mandible and hence the condyle in the TMJ space for evaluation of occlusion.
Provide drug-free pain relief in TMD.
The other methods used for attaining relaxation in those anxious patients are by using any of the following:
An Aqualizer: It is a temporary splint that is used for pain relief, functional improvement, and as an aid to diagnose the extent of problematic dental bite. It creates perfect bite balance and stability through a minimally invasive approach to TMJ treatment.
Nucalm: It is the only patented system that balances and maintains the health of our autonomic nervous system. It acts like a reset button that calms and focuses mind while allowing the body to recover.